Category Strategy: Categorical Pick-Ups for Week 11

Category Strategy: Categorical Pick-Ups for Week 11

This article is part of our Category Strategy series.

CATEGORY STRATEGY

Each week, this article highlights players who are widely available in standard leagues who can help in specific roto categories. While each player highlighted can help in a specific category, there's no guarantee for production in other areas.

POINTS

Dante Exum, PG, Jazz
This comes with a caveat, as Exum is not going to fill it up in the manner that a typical recommendation for this category would, but it is time to grab him off waivers for his potential in all the typical guard categories. Alec Burks is done for the season. Rodney Hood is slated to miss one to two weeks with inflammation in his foot, and the player who replaced Hood in the starting lineup Friday, Patrick Christopher, dislocated his kneecap and could miss two months. Throw in the fact that Trey Burke shot 2-of-19 from the field Friday, and it is hard to envision a scenario where Exum does not start to see 25-30 minutes per game in the short term. He has only been averaging 18.3 minutes to date, so it was not surprising that the 13 points he scored Friday marked a career high. But he is talented enough to be a useful contributor in points, assists, three-pointers and steals in the short term as long as he receives a boost in minutes. Plus, given the state of the Jazz franchise, and the fact that they are not in contention for a playoff spot, it would make sense that Exum

CATEGORY STRATEGY

Each week, this article highlights players who are widely available in standard leagues who can help in specific roto categories. While each player highlighted can help in a specific category, there's no guarantee for production in other areas.

POINTS

Dante Exum, PG, Jazz
This comes with a caveat, as Exum is not going to fill it up in the manner that a typical recommendation for this category would, but it is time to grab him off waivers for his potential in all the typical guard categories. Alec Burks is done for the season. Rodney Hood is slated to miss one to two weeks with inflammation in his foot, and the player who replaced Hood in the starting lineup Friday, Patrick Christopher, dislocated his kneecap and could miss two months. Throw in the fact that Trey Burke shot 2-of-19 from the field Friday, and it is hard to envision a scenario where Exum does not start to see 25-30 minutes per game in the short term. He has only been averaging 18.3 minutes to date, so it was not surprising that the 13 points he scored Friday marked a career high. But he is talented enough to be a useful contributor in points, assists, three-pointers and steals in the short term as long as he receives a boost in minutes. Plus, given the state of the Jazz franchise, and the fact that they are not in contention for a playoff spot, it would make sense that Exum would start accumulating more minutes as the season goes along, even without injuries all around him. If the Jazz decide at some point that Burke is not the point guard of the future (something they probably already know to be true), then Exum needs to start getting more reps running the offense.

REBOUNDS

Rudy Gobert, C, Jazz
Enes Kanter left Friday's game with a sprained ankle, and while Gobert is basically rosterable in mid-sized leagues even when Kanter and Derrick Favors are healthy, he is a must-own if either starting big man is slated to miss time. Kanter also missed Saturday's game, and while he could return in the near future, Gobert could average a double-double with two-plus blocks as long as he is seeing starter's minutes. Steven Adams remains a good option here and Zaza Pachulia should be a useful source of boards just because of the Bucks' lack of options in the frontcourt right now.

ASSISTS

Elfrid Payton, PG, Magic
Payton is likely owned in most serious leagues, but he may not be valued highly, as his first two-plus months as a pro have been somewhat underwhelming on paper. He is averaging just 6.9 points and 5.4 assists while shooting 39.9 percent from the field through 36 games, but Payton is starting to turn it up lately. On Friday he had his best statistical game as a pro, finishing with 16 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds and three steals in 36 minutes against the Nets. He also had an 11-point, seven-assist, eight-rebound game last Saturday against the Hornets, so he is no stranger to flirting with a triple-double. If Reggie Jackson, Trey Burke, George Hill or any of the Minnesota or Boston point guards can be flipped for Payton, now is the time to pursue such a trade. It would not even be crazy to explore a Brandon Jennings for Payton deal, depending on the format, and you might even be able to get something else back with Payton. Speaking of Minnesota point guards, Mo Williams remains another cheap, widely-available option here.

STEALS

Dion Waiters, SG, Cavaliers
With LeBron James slated to miss more than a week, Waiters is a strong add for scoring as well, but he has been quite productive on the defensive end lately, averaging 2.2 steals over his last five games. In shallower formats Waiters is probably already owned, and in that case, Tony Allen and Ronnie Price both offer solid steals totals, although the accompanying stats won't be quite as useful as with Waiters.

BLOCKS

John Henson, C, Bucks
Henson leads the NBA in blocks per minute (five per 48 minutes), and now that Larry Sanders has been banished by coach Jason Kidd, a la Andray Blatche last season in Brooklyn, Henson figures to get plenty of run in the short term. He also could simply be the guy we expected Sanders to be this year, even when Sanders returns to the team. Henson offers many of the same strengths as Sanders without the constant finger pointing when something does not go his way. Alex Len and Rudy Gobert are also strong options here.

THREE-POINTERS

Jodie Meeks, SG, Pistons
Meeks is one of the few players on the Pistons roster who actually fits into what we've become accustomed to with Stan Van Gundy over the years, so naturally he will see significant run over the rest of the season. Even when factoring out Meeks' 34-point game Tuesday in which he hit nine three-pointers, he has still scored in double figures in four straight games with seven three-pointers over that stretch. Obviously we can't factor out a game where a player hits nine three-pointers. The guy can make it rain. He may be owned following that gem of a performance, and if that is the case, C.J. Miles offers a solid backup plan.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James Anderson
James Anderson is RotoWire's Lead Prospect Analyst, Assistant Baseball Editor, and co-host of Farm Fridays on Sirius/XM radio and the RotoWire Prospect Podcast.
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